The Canton Avenue by MOK Design for the Westin Pazhou Hotel in Guangzhou is a walk back in time, revisiting the days when the hotel was a stop on the historic Silk Road of China. The Westin Pazhou Hotel Guangzhou was jointly built by China Foreign Trade Center (Group) and Starwood Hotels and Resorts International Group. It is located in the center of the Guangzhou International Convention & Exhibition Center, with views of the city and the Pearl River.
Entering in, the exhibition halls of the Canton Avenue can be reached through a sky corridor from the hotel directly. There are also a series of sunrooms and green space installations inside the hotel has integrated the renovated building into the surrounding landscape.
A unique green lawn built into the lobby of the hotel brings daylight and air circulation indoors. There are also multiple floor and wall plantings that freshen the timeless design of the space. Central to the lobby is Canton Bazaar, an all-day garden restaurant and lobby bar combined with an outdoor sunroom.
Decorated with mosaics and terrazzo floor, the sunroom was designed to combine a traditional and modern style. The space can accommodate up to 107 people for dining. Food in the Canton Bazaar follows a Cantonese food market theme. There are fresh ingredients reminiscent of the Canton Fair, the historical Maritime Silk Road, and the Lingnan culture of the Guangdong region.
Most notable about the redesign is the use of green plants throughout, including the lobby and restaurant. The MOK Design team focused on both green spaces to create a healthy indoor environment and an update of the style to create a modern sleek take on the Silk Road. Details feature elements of porcelain, bronze and Cantonese embroidery.
A hotel mosaic mural featuring ships sailing to port from around the world was originally created by contemporary artist Ms. Zhang Haiyan. She drew the manuscript of this mosaic mural with colored lead along with designer Li Yanfang. The manuscript was sent to an Italian mosaic factory to be used in the making of the wall mural.
The main elements of the screen include: the Zhenhai Tower, bombax ceiba cotton-tree flowers, the harbor, Guangzhou Tower, merchant ships, seagulls and cloud patterns. It brings to mind the international sea trade that historically made this city a successful port.
The hotel uses a neutral color palette and judicious use of quality ornamentation to evoke tranquility toward its visitors. There is thoughtful use of glass screens, greenery, marble and light and dark brown tones to balance the space.
Photography by Zhang Jing and Weng Xiaodong